Pantera
Cowboys from Hell


4.5
superb

Review

by superflyjojo USER (1 Reviews)
June 15th, 2005 | 346 replies


Release Date: 1990 | Tracklist


Coming out of the eighties music scene where glam metal clones were topping the charts, Pantera a seemingly unknown band from Texas shed the glam metal image and sound from their first four independent releases, and released their amazing major label debut Cowboys From Hell. This record is my personal favorite from the band that defined metal throughout the nineties, and definitely stands the test of time. I only have a few gripes with the album as a whole. In certain songs the vocals seem to be way to low in volume compared to the guitar, bass, and drum tracks. Also there are a few tracks that seem to me to be used as filler. Other than this the album is excellent. Phil Anselmo is in his vocal prime on this album, releasing low growls or high pitched, falsetto, Halfordesque screams. Dimebag's guitar work is top notch on this release playing some of the best riffs in metal, and playing awesome solos all over the fretboard. Rex's thundering bass lines keep the rhythm under Dimebag's lead playing, and he plays some of the catchiest bass lines in metal. Vinnie Paul showing his dexterity with his amazingly fast hands and feet playing on top of the drums or using the thunderous double bass. Now for reviews of the individual tracks.

Cowboys From Hell - 4.5/5
The title track on this album is a great opener and has one of the most recognizable riffs in metal. Every single member of the band is on top of their game on this one.

Primal Concrete Sledge - 3.5/5
A catchy song that is nice and fast. What brings this song down a few notches is it's length (only two minutes and sixteen seconds) and it's lack of a full guitar solo. There are some nice little lead parts here and there. The vocals are also barely audible. If the vocals were louder I'd probably give this one a 4/5 because it's still pretty cool.

Psycho Holidy - 4.5/5
Extremely catchy song where once again all the band members are on top of there game. Very nice vocal showing from Phil on this track. The guitar solo is freaking amazing (almost a minute long!), and the bass line is extremely cool, drums are thundering and fast.

Heresy - 4/5
Another extremely fast track. The vocals are nice and varied, while the rest of the band rips it up. Some of the lyrics are quite humorous, for instance "so they can lick my sack!" Cool Song.

Cemetary Gates - 5/5
The albums first ballad is one of my two favorite songs on the record. The vocals are melodic with some harmonies from Phil and Rex. The guitar is excellent, in the lead and the rhythm. And Rex and Vinnie definitely get the job done when it comes to the rythem.

Domination - 5/5
My other favorite from the album has the most awesome riff I've ever heard. The solo just rips it up, and the slower rythm part at the end with Dimebag tremelo picking a lead high on the fretboard. Phil growls his way through this song and it definitely fits the mood. Rex does an awesome job on the bass, and Vinnie plays his double bass like there was no tomorrow.

Shattered - 4.5/5
This song sounds like it should be being played by Judas Priest. The main riff sounds like a Painkiller era Priest riff, and Phil's voice is so high pitched, he sounds like Rob Halford singing falsetto. I think it's great.

Clash With Reality - 3/5
Not really one of the most memorable songs on the album, but the riff is still pretty cool. This is one of the tracks I kind of consider to be filler for the album. Still though, not horrible.

Medicine Man - 4.5/5
This is probably the strangest song on the album, the verses are spoken rather than sung which adds to its creepiness. I think it's eccentric qualities are what make me like this song so much. The riffs are awesome, and the solo is extremely well done.

Message In Blood - 4/5
This one had to take a little time to grow on me, but now I enjoy it greatly. This one is also quite strange with a trippy sounding verse. It has great bass during the verses and the guitar is haunting.

The Sleep - 4.5/5
The other ballad on the album is another excellent showing from all members of the band. It is just simply amazing like most of the other tracks on the album. The haunting acoustic intro goes right into booming riffage that fits perfectly. It sounds less morbid than Cemetary Gates, and more creepy. I love the overdubbed vocals by Phil.

The Art Of Shredding - 4/5
This is a pretty cool track. It has a groovy bass intro, then it quickly changes to extreme thrash. It's a nice and fast way to end the album. On this song the band is definitely shredding. It's a great closer to a great album.

So that is the album for you. Overall it gets a 4.5/5 which is not an average. I plan on reviewing all of Pantera's albums so stay tuned for my upcoming review of Vulgar Display Of Power.


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Comments:Add a Comment 
Iai
Emeritus
June 15th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Somebody please remove the apostrophe from the album title.

Damrod
Moderator
June 15th 2005


1093 Comments


[Quote=Iai]Somebody please remove the apostrophe from the album title.[/Quote]

Done

Iai
Emeritus
June 15th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nice one.

Shadows
Moderator
June 15th 2005


2530 Comments


'Twas a good review. I've been meaning to get this album since I don't have any Pantera yet.

masada
June 15th 2005


2733 Comments


Good review, rather bad album. Dimebag had probably one of the worst tones ever.

Iai
Emeritus
June 15th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I hate Dimebag's lead work, and his tone was pretty damn annoying in almost all his solos. His rhythm stuff was great, though.

superflyjojo
June 16th 2005


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I am a Pantera fan so that may make me rather biased, but I personally Dime was an excellent guitarist and I found that his tone fit the band perfectly. I love how he just turned all his mids down to give the guitar that chainsaw-like sound

Priestmetal
June 16th 2005


542 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Man u guys are crazy!!! Dimebag is great and so is this album. WHY IS THE AVERAGE USER RATING ONLY 3???

masada
June 16th 2005


2733 Comments


The songwriting is terrible, the production doesn't compliment the music most of the time. Phil Anselmo can do nothing but growl, and when he attempts to sing, he fails miserably. The constant "chugga-chugga" playing is fairly annoying, especially when songs are drug out to 4, and 5, minutes.

That's why, in my opinion. I don't think I'm crazy.

Iai
Emeritus
June 16th 2005


3553 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I will add that this is the only Pantera album I can really stand.

superflyjojo
June 20th 2005


6 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

On this album Phil stays away from harsh vocals. He mostly sings clean, it wasn't until Vulgar Display of Power that he started to stray towards harsh vocals.

carlo_801
June 21st 2005


10 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

good album but i like Vulgar Display of Power better..

Priestmetal
July 31st 2005


542 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Yea me too. But this album is still cool.

spoon_of_grimbo
December 13th 2005


2241 Comments


iv heard the title track, domination, primal concrete sledge, psycho holiday, and cemetery gates, with the latter being the best. on that evidence id be expecting this album to be pretty fucking good!

ChrisD
December 19th 2005


44 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is my fav Pantera album.It's so raw sounding and has some very catchy riffs!

JumpTheF**kUp
December 27th 2005


2717 Comments


Good review but try to fill out your track descriptions.

Not really one of the most memorable songs on the album, but the riff is still pretty cool. This is one of the tracks I kind of consider to be filler for the album. Still though, not horrible

I have no idea what kind of song trhat would be? Try describing the song and the vibe it gives ie. is it a ballad or is it a full out hate song? All i know is its considered filler and the lick is supposedly cool. Just some advice...

As for the album i've only heard cowboys from hell and cemetary gates, both of which are exceptional.

Cravinov13
February 2nd 2006


3854 Comments


their stuff before this album is friggin hair metal... WTF!!!?

Aeksis8745
February 15th 2006


448 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This album is great cowboys from hell is an awesome opener. Also the tone of Dimebag's guitar was the true definition of shredding. It felt like he was really slicing the tracksThis Message Edited On 02.15.06

south_of_heaven 11
February 27th 2006


5438 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

not a bad job on the review, but i wouldve given cowboys from a hell a definite 5, and i agree with you on domination, i think its the best track on the album too. great cd here....

Killtacular
February 27th 2006


1314 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

I despise Dimebag's tone.
It sounds like a chainsaw, but with fewer musical qualities.This Message Edited On 02.27.06



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